Stop romanticizing fly fishing.
Thinking truth eddies in the dark
water severing dirt from stems.
Your artificial caddis indenting
the roof of the underworld.
And yes, you’re allowed to exalt
the stillness. Find you are better
in quiet; out of rooms and wills.
But don’t name yourself brother
to the sky’s white rattling throat.
The kingfisher is not ripping truth
from trout bellies. He is belonging.
Shoulder against the current,
wrestle life out of place by the jaw.
Your truth is foreign and dry to gills.
Tearing out the pieces you favor,
leaving the rest in gut piles for flies.
Kick up gravel and yeast and aluminum
and praise the ease of lordship.
The eagles return to their spot
and truth swings from your mirror:
no place mourns your leaving.
First published in Scapegoat Review, Spring 2022.